So every year Adepticon comes and it goes.  For those who don't know (which I see as unlikely if your reading my blog, or listen to my podcast) is the largest Miniature Wargames Convention in the USA.  It's hosted in Chicago (Schaumburg technically) which is only about three hours from where I live and runs tournaments for just about every miniature wargame you can come up with.  Naturally the largest of these tournaments are run by the juggernaut that is Games Workshop although there are many other companies and game systems there and from as far back as the 1980's at that.  Some that I can think of just off the top of my head:

Age of Sigmar
Warhammer 40K
Blood Bowl
Epic 40K
War Machine
Kings of War
Flames of War
Star Wars: X-Wing

And I have no doubt there are many more.  I've personally played in many tournaments over the years, though not so many game systems.  There are hobby seminars on how to paint, how to build, how to be a better player, how to create content for Blogs and YouTube (clearly, I've never attended these), how to use airbrushes, work with greenstuff and so many more.

The point is that Adepticon is big.  Like, really big, and it absorbs a lot of the first quarter of the year for a lot of hobbyists.  For me that is usually taken by list building, playing practice games, painting models for the lists I'll be using, building display boards and organizing things for the Bitz trade.  This year I'll be attending three tournaments for three different game systems.

Kings of War Team Tournament
After the schism which rocked the Warhammer world a few years back, my friends and I took to Kings of War.  It isn't Warhammer, and the crowd that plays it seems to generally be more competitive than I like but the team tournament that first year was fun and in an effort to get ourselves back into the game, Ryan convinced me to at least come with him and play in it.  It should be a fairly good time and we'll be running a combo of Kingdoms of Men and Dwarfs.

Age of Sigmar Team Tournament
I'm still not a massive fan of the game.  There are too many ridiculous rules for me to truly enjoy.  Many games are decided in the first two turns of the game with huge alpha strike armies or being shot off the board via combinations of large hordes of shooting troops and magic.  Not to be a total hypocrite I take advantage of this as well fielding the most powerful thing available to me which is a BS combo of Dwarfs putting armor piercing on a horde of crossbows twice and lobbing off 60 shots at a time.  Anyway, my friends who were going to play ended up with a scheduling conflict and I'm stepping in to play for one of them.  Luckily my teammate has no delusions of grandeur and we've both agreed to go, drink, roll dice and just have a fun day.

Flames of War
Considering I've been playing Flames for a total of two months this is probably the least prepared I've been for a tournament in a long time.  I'll have probably only gotten maybe ten games under my belt before attending a nationals qualifying tournament which probably will equate to me getting just curb stomped.  However, I've really enjoyed the game, and while I might not have everything right I feel confident that I can win at least win game, even if it’s my last game and I'm among fellow seals getting clubbed.  I'm looking super forward to it in hopes that the community is as fun and accepting as the old Warhammer groups were when started playing that so many years ago.

Preparation for me this year has really focused on Flames.  I've had to assemble and paint an army which as of this writing is just now getting finished two weeks out from the convention.  I still have to assemble a display board for both Flames and the KoW TT as well and I've also been playtesting our TT lists with Ryan, which you can watch one of our battle reports on the YouTube channel here  We're rusty, to say the least.  Again, however we feel confident in going, having a good time and winning at least one game.  If luck smiles on us, maybe I’ll even win two.

If you've never been to Adepticon I highly suggest a stop in.  It cost nothing to show up and walk around, or shop at the vendor hall.  The spectacle for a miniature wargamer is impressive.  I've never seen anything like it before or since.  With that many hobbyists in one place, the modeling skills, painting, terrain building, and more it’s truly an impressive site.  Attending and playing in tournaments can get quite costly though, so before you jump right on the bandwagon of that idea I highly suggest you put thought into it; particularly if you have to travel and stay overnight.  The hotel for Adepticon often books out three months in advance before they even release their schedule in November so when you first commit you almost always do so blindly.  It is just crazy and I wonder every year why I go. At least until I get there and then I remember suddenly.  It’s just so amazing.  Keep an eye on Twitter and Facebook and see the coverage this year.  I'll do my best to take pictures and videos of things so that you can see what I see, or atl east some of it but it really is a be there type of deal. T rust me, in the end, it’s worth it.